The flood of movie stars visiting Atlanta in recent years notwithstanding, Atlanta has had a long history of entertaining visiting luminaries, dignitaries, politicians and a host of other individuals who Atlantans generally wanted to see and be seen with. The late 1800s was a banner year for visitors to the Gate City, not the least […]
Category: Stories of Atlanta
They would have rung a bell…if they’d had one
Consider the question of fire in the early days of Atlanta. How would anybody who wasn’t immediately affected by the fire know that there actually was a fire? I’m not talking about the “big” fire that resulted from Sherman’s occupation but the everyday, commonplace fires that were all too frequent in a city built largely […]
Not really a good idea
It is a common occurrence for cities to change the name of streets and Atlanta is no exception to that rule. With the passage of time, the old street names mean less to the newer generations than to previous generations and there is a natural desire to want to honor the contributions of more contemporary […]
The way we were
Mathew Brady is known as one of America’s first photographers. It was Brady who personally financed and oversaw the effort to photographically document the Civil War. At his own expense, he hired a team of photographers who traveled with various Union armies and together those photographers produced over 10,000 plates; a body of work which […]
What might have been
Oglethorpe University began its career as a liberal arts and sciences university in 1835 in the community of Midway, Georgia, not too far from, what at that time, was the state’s capital, Milledgeville. The Civil War interrupted Oglethorpe’s progression and the university closed its doors in 1862. In 1870 Oglethorpe relocated and reopened in Atlanta […]
She knew it when
In 1826 the State of Georgia ordered a transportation survey to be undertaken. Ostensibly, the purpose of the survey was to evaluate the feasibility of building a canal through North Georgia and up into the frontier of Tennessee. Such a conveyance, it was reasoned, would allow Georgia merchants to gain access to the northern part […]
The Stuff of Space
It is an iconic image, to say the least. Astronaut Alan Shepard, in his full spacesuit, standing on the surface of the moon…swinging at a golf ball. Amid all of the high tech, “get me to the moon and back” gear aboard the Apollo 14 mission, Shepard had smuggled a makeshift golf club and some […]
He made the best out of what he could find
As sure as there is breakfast, lunch and dinner, there is snacking. Satisfying those between-meal cravings is a need we all have. While some people exercise discipline where consumption of snacks are concerned, most of us, at one time or another, have succumbed to the snacking temptation. Snacking certainly is not a new innovation. It […]
That ball is REALLY out of here!
Atlanta’s major league baseball team, the Braves, began their Atlanta baseball history in 1966, but baseball’s history in Georgia predates the Atlanta Braves by nearly 100 years. Before the Braves, there were the Atlanta Crackers, a member of the Southern League and the Atlanta Black Crackers, charter members of the Negro Southern League. Though they […]
This one changed the game
It is obvious that for pretty much everything there had to be a beginning, a first, something that got the ball rolling Sometimes if you’re the first you get to control the category. The name of your product actually becomes the name of all products in the same category: Coke, Kleenex, Jello, Xerox, Gatorade, Cuties. […]
Only one team can ever make this claim.
When asked to name something that is quintessentially American, right after apple pie people usually will say…baseball. It is a long-held belief that baseball is, in fact, America’s national pastime. And while there are many who maintain that football has eclipsed baseball in American popularity, it is hard to argue with the facts of baseball’s […]
Not so fast
This week’s story comes to us from Saporta Report reader and all-around Atlanta history buff Greg Hodges who wrote to ask if we knew the story of Richard Petty’s 1959 victory at Atlanta’s Lakewood Speedway. We did not and it turns out that it is just our kind of story. Long-time Atlantans will remember the […]
The value of getting involved
A graduate of the school now known as Spelman College, she was a teacher in Atlanta and the mother of a young son. Searching for a way for parents in Atlanta – and elsewhere – to get involved in their chilren’s schooling, she laid the groundwork for an education icon.
A once in a lifetime visit, and then it was gone
When the 1895 Cotton States Exposition opened in Atlanta over 120 years ago, it represented the culmination of years of planning and fund raising on the part of the exposition’s organizers. It was a big-time undertaking costing over $2 million dollars, which, by today’s currency standards, equates to around $57 million dollars. The exposition was […]
A controversial approach
In 1895, Atlanta put its best foot forward for all to see with the Cotton States and International Exposition. It was a coming out party of sorts for Atlanta and designed to show the world that Atlanta had moved past its pre-civil war mentality and had taken its rightful place as the leader of the […]
The return of “Uncle Billy”
In November of 1864, having occupied Atlanta for a little over two months, William Sherman left the city to continue his march to the sea. About three miles out, he paused briefly and gazed back at Atlanta. Years later he wrote of that moment, “Behind us lay Atlanta smoldering and in ruins, the black smoke […]
Off we go
It seemed like a good idea but, after the outsider gave his speech, it became a great idea.
The Dragon from Below
Roger Babson is the founder of the Gravity Research Foundation, an organization with the stated purpose of studying, understanding and, ultimately, harnessing the force of gravity. it was the childhood drowning of his older sister in a river near Gloucester, Massachusetts that sparked Babson’s life-long interest in finding a way to control the effects of […]
Aunt Geekie’s gift
In her more than two-decades-long opera career, Atlanta-born Mattiwilda Dobbs performed to acclaim on stages around the world. Along the way, she made history time and again, although, never on stage in Atlanta. It’s the story of a much-delayed hometown debut in this week’s Stories of Atlanta.
Five dollars does not go very far these days in Atlanta – or most other places, for that matter. But, there was a time not so very long ago when five dollars could buy a lifetime of memories. One of those times is the subject of this installment of Stories of Atlanta.